2-string basses

So, I thought this might interest in particular @Korrigan (you still around, buddy?), but maybe others as well…

It was only today that I found out that a well known band here in Denmark (D-A-D) has a bassist (Stig Pedersen) who plays mainly two-string basses - and he has a whacky collection of them. (I guess I hadn’t realized this because their music isn’t what I usually listen to…)

Anyway, here is a video where the bass roadie shows some of the crazy basses:

Please excuse the thick Danish accent, the shameless promotion of a certain company’s products, and some occasional swearing :smile:

A lot of guys that make CBBs (cigar box basses) go with two strings because they think a neck without a truss rod won’t hold up to the tension of more strings. But with a calculator and a little common sense you can make a very playable 3 or 4 string bass without a truss rod by shortening the scale length and increasing the diameter of the strings. The 3 string 25.5" scale bass I made has a total of 45lbs of tension, whereas a 3 string cigar box guitar set up for slide playing usually has around 60 to 75 pounds of tension.

Personally I would never build (or want to play) a 2 string bass. You need at least 3 strings to be able to play a scale in one hand position and you’d have a hell of a time playing many iconic bass lines… and octaves for slapping… that goes right out the window. Even with 3 strings you’ve got to do a whole lot of moving around the neck.

Ok, that settles it, the minimum number of strings for the basses I build is going to be 4. Thanks @joergkutter. :slight_smile:


interesting ! do you have a link or something to show this 3 string bass ? I have some 25.5" parts (from various guitars), including a few necks ; it would be interesting to build an ultra short-scale bass :slight_smile:


2 string or not, I love this dude’s bass collection - very creative - my favorite’s gotta be the upside down bass, haha :stuck_out_tongue:


Thanks for taking away my existential angst of potentially having at least two strings too many on my basses! Playing on a two-string bass must be a bit like Schroeder from the Peanuts playing on his toy piano with the painted-on black keys… then again, he plays beautiful stuff (Schroeder, that is) :rofl:

Yeah, that one is particularly crazy :crazy_face:


The 25.5" scale is really comfortable and the low tension (about 15lbs per string) makes sting bending a very viable technique on this instrument, whole step bends are no problem.


thank you ! that’s a very cool instrument !


Something from this company, will eventually find its way to me. :crazy_face:



Man! Just goes to show, there’s not one “right” way to construct a bass!


Wow, there is a lot of them, too!


There are at least four must-haves there, I’m impressed


My danish found-family gave me one of their CDs back in the late 90s. I played it tons. Good rock music, nice nod to the grunge era, but solid songs, and it was - of course - nostalgic as it reminded me of my far off danish family.

I hadn’t thought about them in years! Thanks for bringing it back!


Det var så lidt! (= you’re welcome!)


made a fortune playing 1 string


How would you string up an ultra short scale? I have also got lots of bass & guitar bits. I have wanted to make a neighbour something “strange”

don’t know really, it must be strung with very big strings for sure. there are calculators on the web.

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